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Dominic West stars in new BBC drama

Heart-throb Dominic West is to star in a new drama which could be the BBC's equivalent to the stylish TV hit Mad Men.

New six-part BBC2 series The Hour will bring to life 1950s London and take viewers behind the scenes of a topical news show as television was finding its feet.

Romola Garai - who has starred in the BBC adaptation of Jane Austen's Emma - and Ben Whishaw will also be in the cast for the Abi Morgan-scripted series.

US-made Mad Men has become a huge worldwide hit for its glamour, style and sharply written plots from New York's ad-land in the early 1960s.

The Hour is also being billed as a sexy, stylistic period show, again looking at gender politics but switching the action back a little earlier to 1956, when TV was still largely in its infancy.

West, the British actor who made his name in cult TV hit The Wire as Baltimore cop McNulty, will star as the news show's upper crust, charismatic anchor man Hector Madden.

Whishaw - who featured in Bob Dylan biopic I'm Not There - will play outspoken journalist Freddie Lyon while Garai will play the show's boss Bel Rowley.

The trio's complex relationship forms a love triangle at the heart of the show

The BBC said the "the interplay and intense ambitions between our rising news team play out against the backdrop of a mysterious murder and Freddie's controversial and dangerous investigation".

BBC drama commissioner Ben Stephenson said: "The combination of Ben Whishaw as Freddie, Romola Garai as Bel and Dominic West as Hector gives us one of the most exciting casts for a British TV series in years."

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